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Fissures Developing Between White House And Congress On Medicaid Plans

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Although President Donald Trump agrees with congressional Republicans about giving states much more control of Medicaid, he has also said he wants to continue coverage for the millions who became eligible under the Medicaid expansion sponsored by the federal health law. GOP members of Congress instead want changes to cut spending. News outlets also look at Medicaid changes Iowa put in place and controversies over the Kansas program.

Politico: GOP Split Over Medicaid Imperils Obamacare Plans
Top GOP lawmakers and President Donald Trump are coalescing around a plan to turn Medicaid over to the states as part of their Obamacare replacement. But the push is already driving a wedge between congressional Republicans and could gum up the repeal process altogether. (Everett, Bade and Pradhan, 1/23)

Marketplace: Possible Changes To Medicaid
The Trump administration wants to overhaul more than just the Affordable Care Act — Medicaid is also on its list for reforms. White House officials are signaling their support for turning Medicaid, the health care program for poor and disabled people, into a block grant program with specific spending caps for states. That could mean big cuts to either state budgets, or Medicaid rolls — or both. (Gorenstein, 1/23)

Stat: In Iowa, Financial Pain Follows Trump-Style Medicaid Reforms
When President Donald Trump tapped policy consultant Seema Verma to run Medicaid and Medicare in his administration, he called her part of a health care “dream team.” But the health policy changes she helped design in Iowa have felt more like a nightmare to providers serving poor and disabled residents across the state. Verma has helped several states revamp Medicaid, including Kentucky and Indiana. Here in Iowa, she worked on an aggressive effort to privatize the program, which provides health care to about 600,000 adults and children. (Martin, 1/24)

KCUR: Colyer: State Addressing Federal KanCare Concerns 
As Kansas lawmakers move forward with efforts to increase oversight of KanCare, Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer says Brownback administration officials are addressing the issues that federal regulators cited in denying a one-year extension of the program last week. Colyer still says he thinks politics played a role in the decision, which came in the final days of Barack Obama’s presidency. But hours after returning from the inauguration of President Donald Trump, he said in a phone interview Saturday that the state will resolve regulators’ concerns with KanCare, which provides health coverage to more than 425,000 Kansans. (Marso, 1/23)

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